Teeth whitening improves quality of life and beauty. This procedure has become the most preferred form of cosmetic dentistry around the world. Basically, there are two types of whitening which are intrinsic and extrinsic whitening. Intrinsic is the process of whitening the dentin or the inner part of the tooth. While extrinsic is the process of whitening the visible part of the teeth.
Nowadays, the process has become cheaper and more accessible to people. But its popularity has resulted in the introduction of more harmful products in the market. The good news is that there are lots of safe and innovative technological procedures and items for teeth whitening.
This article would talk about the things you need to know about it. Also, we’ll share what dentists from Dental Designs – one of the most trusted dental clinics in Singapore – are saying about teeth whitening. There are many products out there but consulting with your dentist would offer you the safest and fastest solution
What causes tooth colouration?
- Old age – Dentist say as our age advances, our teeth also turn yellow. However, some people have coloured teeth naturally.
- Cavities – This can make your teeth yellow or greyish
- Chewing tobacco and smoking
- Orthodontic lesions after the removal of metal braces
- Genetics – They determine the colour of the teeth since birth
- Exposure to fluoride especially during childhood
- Using a mouthwash with chlorhexidine
- Eating teeth-staining foods without brushing your teeth adequately
- Poor dental hygiene
- Dental disorder such as amelogenesis imperfect – This can discolour your teeth into yellow or brown
- Mercury or Amalgam fillings
- Excessive ingestion of tea, red wine or red wine containing tannins
- Taking strong antibiotics such as tetracycline before the age of 12
What do dentists recommend?
Whiter teeth do not necessarily mean better tooth health, according to the dentists at Dental Designs Clinic in Singapore. But there is nothing wrong in trying to whiten your teeth so long as you adopt a safe method. However, some teeth whitening procedure may also cause sensitivity. But the sensitivity may last 24 hours or more after the procedure.
Many methods are available for teeth whitening; however, dentists recommend professional bleaching. There is also another method known as laser or power whitening. This is also a bleaching method, but it uses a laser for shortening the amount of time to whiten your teeth. After the bleach is applied, the dentist will point a laser at your teeth which would activate the chemical to act rapidly. Before carrying out teeth a professional teeth whitening procedure, your dentist will examine you to ascertain if you’re suitable or not.
So, if you are considering the procedure, consult with your dentist. If you do it correctly, then it would be safe. You should know that in teeth whitening you deal with live tissues. There are many fake products out there, and if you’re not cautious, you can permanently damage your teeth.
Does teeth whitening work for everyone?
Teeth whitening works for everyone but it works better for those that have been taking better care of their teeth. If you floss and brush regularly, avoid discolouration foods, you would undoubtedly get a better result. Teeth whitening do not automatically erase the harm you have done to your teeth over the years. Also, the procedure is not once; an ethical dentist would always tell you that. Periodically you may have to go and re-whiten them again.
When you over-do it your teeth can be greyish in colour or translucence. Also, be careful not to carry out whitening procedures for children. Most ethical dentists would decline that anyway because it can cause the death of the tooth, pains or severe sensitivity.
Duration – It may last for up to 2 years, depending on the type of procedure and your lifestyle. And in some cases, it can last as short as six months according to dentists.
Teeth Relapse – Most ethical dentist in Singapore would tell you that you may experience teeth relapse with some whitening procedures.
How to prevent stains after a teeth whitening procedure?
Dentists always state that prevention is the best method for tooth related problems. You should brush at least twice a day. Also, carry out flossing which can rid your teeth of food particle and prevent cavities.
Proper nutrition is another important factor. Refined carbohydrate such as sugars is bad for your teeth. A healthy diet comprising of healthy fats, vegetables and fruits are right for you. Coffee, tobacco, and coloured drinks all have staining components in them which you should avoid. If you ingest those items, then you should rinse your mouth immediately.
Whatever teeth whitening procedure, you want to carry out, always consult with a dentist especially if you are predisposed to the following conditions:
- You have very sensitive teeth
- You have a broken tooth
- Pregnant or breastfeeding
- If you have carried out plastic fillings in the past
- Your less than 19 years of age
- You have acid erosion on your teeth
- Gun sensitivity and recession
- You are sensitive to hydrogen peroxide
Other procedures to consider
Aside from dental teeth whitening procedures if you want to use other products, you should consider the following.
Labelled Ingredients – Effective whitening products contain carbamide and peroxide which are capable of removing surface and deep stains. But, ensure that the concentrations of peroxide do not exceed 10% and carbamide does not exceed 35% as recommended by the Dentist. Anything more can be corrosive and damaging to your teeth.
If the product goes above 10% for peroxide and 35% for carbamide, then you should only use it with the supervision of a dentist.
Other factors to consider are ease of use and whitening result. The product should be comfortable to use. You should also check out for product reviews to ensure that you get good value for your money
Teeth whitening is a fast and effective procedure but you should try to avoid staining drinks or foods to prevent further yellowing. Also, bear in mind that you may have to do it again after some time depending on how you well you maintain them.